San Joaquin de Flores is a quaint, colorful, and charming colonial town located ten miles from San Jose, the national capital. The small setting and slower pace of life allow for exceptional opportunities for linguistic and cultural integration.
Everything can be reached on foot and students can visit historic landmarks and admire the 18th century architecture of the town. San Joaquín is noted for its small-town friendliness and sense of community.
San Joaquin, Costa Rica
About the Program
The San Joaquin program, offered through Hobart and William Smith Colleges' affiliation with Academic Programs International (API), is based at the Instituto San Joaquin de Flores. Local university faculty and API staff will deliver the academic program and oversee all logistical arrangements, including orientation, excursions, homestay, and cultural
All courses are taught in Spanish but in the context of an institute for non-native speakers. Students must take at least one Spanish language course (i.e. grammar, literature, composition, conversation) at an advanced level and will take electives in areas such as Latin American studies, cultural studies, history, sociology, and environmental studies/ecotourism for a total equivalent of 4 HWS courses.
Students with advanced Spanish language proficiency may elect to take one course at the local university alongside Costa Rican students. For course options and course descriptions, please consult the API website here. Click on Costa Rica, San Joaquín de Flores, Spanish Language and Latin American Studies program, course offerings.
This program is geared towards those studying Spanish language and culture, Latin American studies, environmental studies, and sociology.
This program is open to all sophomores, juniors and seniors in good academic and social standing with a minimum gpa of 3.0. Students must successfully complete a minimum of 4 semesters of college-level Spanish or equivalent before departure. Due to the challenging nature of study abroad, student academic and disciplinary records will be carefully screened.
Students will live with a host family in San Joaquín de Flores. The homestay provides students a perspective into Costa Rican family life and the opportunity for daily practice of the language. API students are placed one to a family with their own bedroom, and they receive two meals per day during the week and three meals per day on weekends.
Four excursions per semester are included in the program to various locales that include historic sites, national parks, botanical gardens, rainforests and other areas of cultural interest.
Students will be charged standard HWS tuition and fees, room fees, a 2/3 board fee, and a $600 administrative fee. This will cover tuition for a four-course semester, health insurance, housing, 2 meals a day during the week and 3 meals a day on weekends, and program-related activities and excursions. Students should plan to bring the remaining 1/3 board fee (about $900) with them to cover the meals not included.
Additional expenses not covered include airfare, books, visa, immunizations, and personal expenses (laundry, entertainment, ground transportation and independent travel). We estimate airfare for this program at $600-$800 from the East Coast, books at $200, and visas and immunizations at $200. It is difficult to give an accurate estimate of personal expenses because student spending habits differ considerably. We would suggest a minimum of $1200 above and beyond meal expenses. However, students on a tight budget should be able to manage with less. If you are concerned about finances, we strongly encourage you to talk to the CGE staff who can offer information and advice based on your specific situation.
API has supplemental scholarships available to students who have been accepted to the San Joaquin program. Please see Amy Teel at the CGE for information on how to apply for these scholarships.
HWS students must complete all components of the Global Education application in order to be considered for admission to this program.
- This program is offered every Spring semester.
- All components of the application must be submitted online by the published deadline. Specific deadline dates are set each semester and typically will be in October (for Fall programs) and March (for Spring programs).
IMPORTANT: The handbook(s) below is/are the most recent handbook(s) published for this program. A new version, with updated information, will be made available each semester. Program participants will receive their updated handbook approximately 2-3 months prior to their program’s start date.
Please DO NOT MAKE TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS until you have received final confirmation of the program start/finish dates for the specific semester you are attending. Dates included in versions of the program handbook intended for previous semesters do not necessarily apply to future programs.
NOTE: The information above is subject to change. Please see the CGE for more information.
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